City of Lights Dental

Aurora Dental Arts Building             
1940 West Galena Boulevard Suite 11
Aurora, IL 60506

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Posts for: February, 2018

February 27, 2018
Category: Uncategorized
Tags: Untagged

February is national children's dental health month. According to the American Academy of pediatric dentistry (AADA), forty-four percent of cavities occur on the chewing surfaces of baby teeth, which are called pits and fissures. Decay can be prevented with dental sealants for children. Sealants are a thin coating applied to the grooves on the chewing surfaces of the back teeth. The back teeth are most likely to indicate decay. Sealants also prevent food particles and germs from getting stuck in the grooves of teeth. Sealants are usually applied' between the ages of six and twelve. They usually last five to ten years, depending on the patient's oral hygiene routine. Developing healthy habits at an early age and scheduling regular dental visits helps children to get a great start on a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums. Placing sealants is a fast procedure. There is not any drilling involved, and the sealant is white to match the teeth. The American Academy of pediatric dentistry (AAPD) recommends that a child can begin visiting the dentist by the age of one or within six months after the first primary tooth erupts. Don't forget to call us and make your children's dental cleaning and Check up the appointment!

By City of Lights Dental, PC
February 13, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: gummy smile  

A “gummy” smile, in which the upper gums are too prominent, is a common condition. There are several causes for gummy smiles — determining which one is the first step to having your appearance changed.

Although perceptions vary from person to person, most dentists agree a gummy smile shows 4 mm or more of gum tissue, and the amount is out of proportion with the length of the crown (the visible tooth). Teeth normally erupt through the gums during childhood and continue development until early adulthood, shrinking back from the tooth until stabilizing in place.

This typically produces a crown length of about 10 mm, with a “width to length” ratio of about 75-85%. But variations can produce differences in the relationship between teeth and gums and the width to length ratio of the teeth. The teeth may appear shorter and the gums more prominent. Worn teeth, caused by aging or grinding habits, may also appear shorter.

If tooth to gum proportionality is normal, then the cause may be upper lip movement. When we smile, muscles cause our lips to retract 6-8 mm from the lip’s resting position. If the amount of movement is greater (meaning the lip is hypermobile), it may show too much of the gums. The upper jaw can also extend too far forward and cause the gums to appear too prominent.

There are a number of ways to improve gummy smiles, depending on the cause. Periodontal plastic surgery known as crown lengthening removes and reshapes excess gum tissue to reveal more of the tooth. Lip hypermobility can be reduced with Botox injections (to paralyze the muscles) or in some cases with surgery to reposition the muscle attachments. Orthognathic surgery can be used to surgically reposition an overextended upper jaw. Other cosmetic enhancements such as orthodontics, bonding or porcelain restorations can also prove effective.

The first step is to obtain an accurate diagnosis for your gummy smile. From there, we can devise the best treatment approach to bring your smile back into a more attractive proportion.

If you would like more information on minimizing a gummy smile, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Gummy Smiles.”